This post was originally published on Search Engine Watch.
There is no denying that the internet can make or break your business based on how visible it is to modern day consumers.
That’s why it can’t be stressed enough just how necessary it is to build a user-friendly, attractive website that showcases everything you have to offer.
During the build-out process of your site, gaining a top ranking position in search engines and providing a great visitor experience are the best ways to achieve the conversion results you want to see.
One strategy that has been used for years to accomplish these goals but can still be difficult to understand and properly carry out, is to create unique SEO landing pages.
With well-designed and optimized landing pages, you have the potential to see your website traffic and profits increase significantly.
Read on to find out exactly why your website needs landing pages and how to make sure you’re getting the most out of your work.
The importance of landing pages
If you’re going to capitalize on this technique, you first have to appreciate what landing pages can do for you. The objective is to convert as many visitors into leads and customers as possible.
Targeted landing pages do this by helping take your SEO and marketing efforts a step further by bringing visitors past the homepage.
Using clear information, they can direct users based on what you would like them to do: make a purchase, subscribe to a newsletter, book a service, and so forth.
When compared to landing pages, analytics for home and service pages can be much more difficult to measure for success. Landing pages provide you with the opportunity to easily see what kind of metrics you’re earning, such as demographics, bounce rates, and other behaviors.
Therefore you can gauge the value of any given landing page, and adjust it for better optimization as needed.
Landing pages also help you rank for distinct keywords and serve as a place where you can include business achievements and put your experience on display. This boosts your brand’s trustworthiness and credibility.
The purpose of landing pages for PPC and SEO
Though one is focused on producing advertising results and the other on free organic traffic, landing pages are commonly used to support both PPC and SEO campaigns.
Each will target your keywords and help get people where you would like them to go on your website.
However, the key difference is that with PPC landing pages, the content and imagery must correspond with whatever it is you’re promoting in the ad’s message in order to quickly make a conversion.
SEO landing pages on the other hand, are meant to convey your company’s relevancy to the targeted keyword search.
They also share useful content that highlights why your business is different from others in the same industry, building a rapport and forming a connection with your audience. This increases the probability of repeat visitors.
A landing page optimization Checklist
The only way landing pages can truly be effective and help your SEO rankings, and ultimately your conversion rates, is if they are constructed to be fully optimized for search.
It’s more than simply throwing a few words onto a blandly-designed page and asking visitors to fill out a form. Bounce rates for these types of pages are generally very high.
Using this checklist, you can ensure your site’s landing pages are developed with merit.
- Begin by devising a clean, inviting template that is easy to navigate for your landing page designs.
- Ensure your page title includes your targeted key phrase and location, if applicable. Your page title should be more than 35 and less than 50 characters.
- Optimize your meta-descriptions for the best CTR. Keep your meta-descriptions between 50 and 150 characters.
Pro tip: Include your phone number for click-to-call.
- Use a search engine-friendly URL that is short, yet includes your targeted keyphrase and location.
- Introduce a headline that is pertinent to the intended search.
Pro tip: Avoid making your page title and H1 exactly the same.
- Generate original content using keywords that explain who, what and why as it relates to the intended search.
- Add eye-catching images and/or video that complement your content.
- Include a straightforward call to action with company contact information.
- Whenever looking to rank for a particular location, add a Google map representing the local area. If you have a brick-and-mortar location, embed your Google Local Listing with the pin marker on the map.
- Include seals, certifications, memberships and logos for credibility and to earn trust.
- Place testimonials from happy clients and links to your top review sites.
- Make social sharing buttons available and visible.
How to utilize the fetch tool to expedite your work
The last step to making sure your landing pages are working for you as quickly as possible is to use the Fetch as Google tool in Google Search Console, formerly known as Webmaster Tools.
Fetch as Google gives you the power to submit your new page URLs directly to Google’s index without having to wait weeks and weeks for them to be found.
The faster your optimized landing pages are recognized by Google, the faster they can begin factoring into your SEO rankings.
Even the highest quality website won’t see much success if visitors are not being driven to it. As a proven method for lead conversion, if your website is lacking in optimized landing pages, you could potentially be missing out on quite a bit of traffic and revenue.
Make this part of your SEO campaign for an overall improvement in your online marketing results.
About the Author
Matt Morgan is the founder and CEO of Optimize Worldwide, a web design & SEO company based out of Northern California. Matt writes for numerous SEO blogs offering tips to help companies gain more online visibility in the major search engines through post panda/penguin website optimization, content marketing, and creative link building strategies. Offline Matt enjoys enduro motocross riding, networking with like minds, and hanging out with his wife Holly.